Simon has since negotiated an order for 4 MWA kits which are on their way to Indonesia.
Clearly one reason why MWA is used so widely is that it is generic, as is its recently released partner Working Mathematically with Infants (WMI). That is, it will support teachers to provide a Working Mathematically Core Curriculum while addressing any official document in any state or country.
The Maths With Attitude approach to which Simon refers is a suite of curriculum documents for Years 3-10 produced for its members by the Mathematical Association of Victoria (MAV). Our one page description of the Working Mathematically Process (see Link List below) heads each of these documents and the resources assumed are MWA kits plus other MAV materials. For every year level the MAV supplies 34 weeks of planned syllabus in two semesters which addresses, and is linked to, every requirement of the Victorian government syllabus.
- Professional Development Developments
- Following a second professional development visit to Coolgardie CAPS school, Susie Hall sent this brief message:
Part of the PD focus was the school's WMI kit, in which Eric is listed as an investigation for Semester 2 in Year 1. Susie already runs a learning centre approach with her class of Year K/1 Aboriginal children, so it seems Eric fitted in on all counts. WMI includes 45 Threaded Activities and 48 Investigations across Years K-2. Find out more in the Link List below.
Tried out some of the challenge games with my guys, they loved them, especially Eric The Sheep, the game I played in the PD. They were captivated with it, constantly tried getting the right answers, kept them busy for a fair time...
A new Maths on the Move course has been added to our activities for this year. This time for the Catholic Education Office Canberra/Goulburn. They have also raised the possibility of running a six day program for them in 2011 and the possibility of training their officers to present that program in the future.
Around about now you are going to be asked to prepare your own Professional Learning budget for 2011. You might like to take a cruise through our Professional Development choices. See Link List below.
- Resources & Ordering Upgrade
As promised last month our Resources & Ordering section has been completely upgraded just in time for 2011 budget submissions. All our resources can now be found from the one link with brief descriptions, photos, prices and additional information for each. There is no reason for mathematics to be taught the way it always has been.
We have also produced a brand new one page order form. You can use your school purchase order or our order form. Wherever you are in this big, wide mathematics education world Ina Koetsier, our Distribution Manager, is ready, willing and able to look after you. See Link List below or Navigation Ribbon above.
- History of the Maths Mat
While rebuilding the Resources & Ordering link we came across fragments of work from our past related to the Maths Mat. Use the Link List below to find out more about activities built around the concept of physically involving students in learning mathematics. Given the building of so many Assembly Halls across the country at the moment, this could be a good time to get the equivalent grid painted professionally and permanently on the gymnasium floor.
- For Footy Fans
In Australia, September is Footy Finals month for our two codes Australian Rules (AFL) and Rugby (NRL). Maths300 members might have noticed that Education Services Australia has finally changed the featured lesson on the Members page. The featured lesson is now Sporting Finals. It supports teachers to make use of this current event to explore the probabilities associated with planning a fair finals structure.
You're not a Maths300 member?
Don't worry there is help in the Task Cameo for Task 1, Final Eight (see Link List below). However, you won't be able to access the complete lesson plan or the magnificent software that allows you to play thousands of finals programs in seconds.
- MacMaths Revealed
Have you ever looked at the MacMaths blog on the NCETM site in Britain? NCETM is the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics, funded by the British Department for Education.
MacMaths has been writing relevant, challenging, and slightly rebellious blogs for some years. They are short, pithy and worth a read. They may be based in the British scene, but the issues addressed are usually common across countries. The UK has travelled some awful mathematics education paths in recent decades and those who are not aware of that history are in danger of repeating it - especially the potentially horrifying consequences of a national curriculum and national name and shame.
But who is MacMaths?
In the latest issue of Mathematics Teaching, Association of Teachers of Mathematics, Issue 219, the MacMaths blog from August 2007, titled Was there ever any point to the three-part lesson?, has been published in print. It reveals that MacMath is ... our old friend, former teacher in tough London schools and former HMI, John Hibbs. John is a person organisations such as AAMT and MAV could well consider as a keynote speaker for future conferences.
Way prior to the blogs, John was providing material for our Working Mathematically page through his Notes from an Inspector's Notebook (see Link List) which provide examples of working like a mathematician.
Perhaps this quote from Was there ever any point to the three-part lesson? might encourage you to find the MacMath link below:
Somehow I wish that teachers would have the confidence to take back the responsibility, that can only be theirs, of deciding how best to teach their pupils and stop thinking that there is some magic form that would guarantee successful lessons; that there is a right and proper way to do things with their pupils that someone else knows about. Please bring back variety, flexibility, novelty, and a sense of lessons that are fit for purpose?
If not, then perhaps some of these other titles:
- Mathematics Teachers mark too much
- Are we obsessed with assessing?
- Could all that money be better spent?
- POLITICIANS - leave those schools alone
- ...and many more
- Maths Not At The Movies
A new paper with this title has been added to our Web Papers page (see Link List below). It is built around the process of working like a mathematician applied to a classic (but 'stupid') text book problem about painters painting separate houses at different rates and then combining to paint one house. Suddenly the problem becomes quite rich - not because the mathematics content has changed, but because the bigger picture of learning to work like a mathematician gives the problem focus and depth beyond the unreal situation it describes. This paper was first published in Vinculum, Mathematical Association of Victoria, June 2006.
- Tasks of the Month
Two new cameos this month.
- Number Game is similar to a television game show current on the SBS network in Australia. Each student is dealt seven cards and one is turned up. Students compete to obtain the highest score by combining the cards according to a brief set of rules to obtain the same number as the Turn Up card. Rules have been chosen to encourage the use of division.
- Who Lives Where? One of number of language and logic puzzles in the collection. This one is reasonably straight forward but still involves several subtleties of language and reasoning.
Click a photo to access its cameo, or access all current cameos through the Link List below.
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